For those entering into the world of teaching for the first time, we get you. It can be scary to take those first steps from being in a fully-supervised environment to suddenly being in charge of 30 kids on your own.
But it’s precisely what you’ve been training for, and with our tips to help you along the way, we’re sure you’ll succeed and keep on loving exactly what you do.
5 Tips for new teachers
So, what tips do we have to hand to help you with that new transition and all the scary things that go along with being a newly-qualified teacher?
Here’s what we’ve got:
- Choose one thing to work on at a time
- Start out strong when it comes to managing behavior
- Work out what methods work best for you
- Take advice and talk to other teachers
- Roll with the punches
To give you that little extra boost to get started on the right foot from day one:
1. Choose one thing to work on at a time
When you start out teaching solo for the first time, it can all be a little overwhelming. Teachers never stop learning, especially when it comes to mastering certain things in the classroom. Whether it’s managing your time better, working on getting better at gaining your students attention or even knowing everything when it comes to the specific subject matter, don’t expect to be an expert from day one.
Instead, take it slow and work on one element at a time, and you’re far more likely to succeed in the long run.
2. Start out strong when it comes to managing behavior
Behavior is one thing in the classroom that is difficult to change once it’s been ingrained. Even when you’re working on finding your feet, maintaining proper behavior management is essential to ensuring your students act how you want them to, and don’t fall into bad habits. Letting behavior slide on week one is an easy way to lead to struggles for the rest of a semester.
Stay strong, be firm, and don’t let the kids get away with it just because you’re still getting situated. If you show your students good behavior is something that’s a must in your classroom, you’ll be far more likely to have a better teaching experience overall.
3. Work out what methods work best for you
People say teaching is an art, not a science. What works for one teacher may not necessarily apply to the next, so don’t think you have to stick rigidly to the specific way of teaching you’ve been taught in the past. As long as you stick to the curriculum and provide students with all they need, a better teacher is one that works to a method that feels natural to them.
Don’t be afraid to experiment and research different teaching methods that might work for you before you enter that classroom for the first time.
4. Take advice and talk to other teachers
While you’ll no doubt be working with other relatively new teachers, there are generally at least a few veteran teachers in every school that will be more than happy to provide advice when you need it. Make friends, open those lines of communication, and take the opportunity to learn from the experts.
After all, when you’re stumped with a teaching issue, there’s no better person to turn to than another teacher. It’s something you can pay back to new teachers in years to come.
5. Roll with the punches
Sometimes, things just don’t work out. Whether it’s your lesson plan that gets torn to shreds or the kids just aren’t engaging with what you’re doing, knowing when to change is a vital skill for any teacher. Whether it’s switching up the way you’re teaching something or knowing when your students need a time out in their crammed schedule, knowing when to roll with the punches and enact a little change can go a long way. Don’t let a bad day get you down; it’s just an opportunity to do something even better next time.
If you’re entering a classroom as a fully-fledged teacher for the first time this year, you know there’s a lot to learn. But there’s little as rewarding as teaching – especially when you take our tips into account and start with your best foot forward towards success.